William Eichler 17 January 2018

Centenary of women’s suffrage should see push for gender equality, campaigners say

Centenary of women’s suffrage should see push for gender equality, campaigners say  image

The centenary of women’s suffrage will be a ‘missed opportunity’ unless barriers to political participation are removed, say campaigners.

A coalition of campaigning charities today called on the Government to do more to actively encourage women’s political participation to mark the one hundredth anniversary of women winning the right to vote.

The UK parliament ranks 39th in the world for women’s representation because only 32% of MPs are women.

This level of underrepresentation is also reflected at the local level where 33% of councillors and just 17% of council leaders are women.

To remedy this the Government and parties should set clear targets, adopt an action plan and act to remove barriers to women’s political participation, said the newly-formed Centenary Action Group (CAG).

‘Increasing women’s participation in politics is critical. It is a central tenet of the UN Global Goals (Goal 5),’ a statement from CAG said.

‘All countries are aiming for these goals, but most countries, including the UK, are still falling short. In the centenary year of women winning the right to vote, it’s time for action.’

In 2015, the United Nations adopted 17 Global Goals to end extreme poverty and build a better world by 2030. Goal 5 was, ‘Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls.’

‘Increasing the number of women in Parliament is not only a matter of basic human rights and equality, but is also necessary at a time when voter participation is low, and politics is reaching a crisis of credibility,’ said the CAG statement.

‘Women in politics face an extraordinary amount of abuse, especially on social media, partly because they speak up but also simply because they are women. This discourages women from participating in political debate.

‘From the work undertaken towards women’s political participation the world over, there is clear evidence that the more diverse the decision makers are, the more widely power is spread — and the less room there is for abuse and discrimination.

‘It also makes it more likely that decisions made will benefit everyone, including the most marginalised women and girls in the UK and beyond.’

For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Director of Adult Care Operations

Southend-on-Sea Borough Council
Competitive Salary
As Director of Adult Care Operations, you will be the operational lead for the service, driving practice improvement, enhancing... Southend-on-Sea, Essex
Recuriter: Southend-on-Sea Borough Council

Adult Social Care - Process Assurance Officer

Essex County Council
Up to £23197 per annum
Job PurposeECC Adult Social Care, through effective practice, is moving towards a transformational shift from a focus on long-term care support, to a England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Learning Support Assistant

Essex County Council
£17000 - £18938 per annum
Learning Support Assistant Permanent, Part Time £18,938 per annum (FTE) Location
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Legal Support Officer – Housing & Litigation

City of York Council
£20,422 - £21,552 per annum
This role will provide support to the Legal Services Housing and Litigation team. York, North Yorkshire
Recuriter: City of York Council

Social Worker - Discharge to Assess

Essex County Council
Up to £207 per day + Umbrella
About the RoleWorking to support adults, and their families, who have complex social needs and are more vulnerable as a result of disability, exclusi England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recuriter: Essex County Council

Public Property

Latest issue - Public Property News

This issue of Public Property examines how how flexible workspaces can lead the way in regeneration for local authorities, Why local authority intervention is key to successful urban regeneration schemes and if the Government’s challenge of embracing beauty is an opportunity for communities.

The March issue also takes a closer look at Blackburn with Darwen Council's first digital health hub to help people gain control over health and care services.

Register for your free digital issue